Do you need to unplug?

The more time I spend at the computer…the more time I spend at the computer.  Part of me always thinks that more time at the keyboard means productivity (and I think some of that is true) but should I also try to step away and look around once in a while?

I was pondering this when I read this great post by SEAN D’SOUZA.

He says: “Sit back and think about all the ideas that changed the direction of your life. And think of where you were at the time. Nope, still not in the shower. You were somewhere on the road, somewhere deep in conversation with someone or lost in a book.”

He argues that computers are “output machines. When we deal with computers we’re rarely getting input.” In other words, we won’t get inspired seated at the computer.

What works for him is “take a trip to the cafe. I sit down and then I let two hours pass while I doodle my way through my plan. It’s not like I have a plan, but the plan unfolds. As I sit, the plan takes on a different dimension.” Even if he’s busy.

I too go to my favourite cafe. I do this often. And I get inspiration from life. But I have to add, that I also get inspired by the amazing posts I read online. There are some good posts out there (ahem, like this one by Sean D’Souza). 

Still, I think there’s something to be said about balance. Perhaps I should lift my head from the screen once in a while. Who knows what I will see.

Right. I forgot. I live in Canada.

No power = One panic-stricken author

This morning, after my usual lovely wake up call via Ocean the-wonder-akita, I turned to look at my clock…to find it blank. We had no power.

We live in the country. Power outages work differently when your only visible neighbours are trees. Yes, the hydro trucks roll out to restore it, but not with the same urgency as in Toronto. When you lose your power in the city, you can reasonably expect it to return in a few hours. In the country, it could be days. Easy.

My first thought was: coffee. Quickly followed by: my computer! We headed out to grab our morning fix and started planning things. The first issue was the cold. It’s a warmer day today (around 0 C), so the water in the pipes wasn’t going to freeze and burst and destroy our house. But it was going to get cold in the house and, if we didn’t have heat in a day or so, those pipes were definitely going to burst.

We called hydro and got the usual automated machine that told us to wait. Without any information or the way to get one (no Google), we started to get fidgety in our darkened house. Every thing we wanted to do suddenly required electricity. Forget coffee or checking your email, basic necessities also need hydro. Hot shower? Need a water heater.  Warmth? need the house heater. Hair dryer? Same. Bathroom? No light. Good luck feeling your way in the dark.

Time to head into the city. We drove getting more and more desperate with each passing home we saw in the dark. And, when we finally spotted a Tim Hortons with power, we were actually cheering.

Even better, this Tim Hortons had Wi-Fi.